Oasis of Mars

#BlogBattle “Oasis” Week 23

The Oasis of Mars. He had to get there. It was the only place in the galaxy where clean water was still available. And Zane didn’t plan to risk certain death by attempting to sneak through the Denian blockade around Earth Prime.

Granted, Mars was also guarded, but because of super-religious Helio Vectarus, Potentate of the Denians, there were less restrictive barriers around the red planet. Denians were superstitious, and other than the rare foray to pillage the homes of the remaining Mars settlers, in search of new slave stock, they kept their distance.

The red color of Mars mimicked the color of Denian blood. They believed when their blood turned that color outside their bodies they were losing the power of J’deng-mi, the god of life and fire. Mars’ surface represented death. It was the only thing which had saved the humans who’d settled the planet from being completely wiped out.

Zane finished scanning the vicinity for any sign of Denian patrols. The path looked clear and the chances of being caught on this particular day were low because of the celebration of Vraths. They would be on minimum alert for several hours yet.

He entered the coordinates for the oasis into the auto-landing system and manually lifted off from the misshapen moon of Mars, Phobos. The density of Phobos was perfect for deflecting Denian sensors.

The small transport ship made its way toward Fruitful, the Oasis of Mars as it was generally known. The hairs on the back of Zane’s neck stood on end. Never a good sign. Something wasn’t right.

He unbuckled and leaned forward in his chair, reaching his hands over the dash to balance his weight. The view before him made the wheels in his mind spin out of control.

“Hey, Sean, come and look at this,” Zane said over the intercom.

Zane looked over his shoulder several times, concerned Sean hadn’t heard him. He kept the main part of his focus on Mars’s surface, and his heart rate picked up a notch.

Sean stumbled through the door, rubbed sleep from his eyes, and flopped into the seat next to Zane. “What’s up, Cap?”

“Look there. We’re coming up on Fruitful, but something’s off.”

Sean stretched then rubbed his eye one more time before mimicking the captain’s stance over the dash. He inspected the Mars habitat for a few seconds. “You mean the clouds in the dome?”

“There are no clouds at the Oasis of Mars. What do you think’s going on in there?”

“Don’t got a clue.”

Zane’s unease rippled through his muscles. He dropped back into his seat and danced his finger across the controls, taking the ship out of autopilot.

Sean stared at the planet for a few more seconds before he took his seat and buckled up. Zane knew Sean wouldn’t bother questioning him, no matter how odd his behavior. He’d been Zane’s second for too many years, and they’d been through too much for Sean not to trust Zane’s gut instinct.

“Take over observation controls, Sean. If there’s trouble below, it’s probably the Denians.”

Sean swiveled his chair toward the correct controls and went to work.

Zane increased their rate of entry. The heat of their speed upon entering the atmosphere of Mars could be felt radiating through the ship’s hull. It reminded him of a time they’d narrowly escaped a Glaston cruiser’s attack by sling-shotting around Caph’s smallest planet.

Sweat beaded on his brow. He swiped it away with one hand, but his eyes never left the target for landing.

Meanwhile, Sean attempted to contact the surface. “Colony Fruitful, this is Caelum I requesting permission to enter your atmosphere.”

They waited for a reply. Other than the occasional instrument monitor beep, silence filled the cockpit. Zane held his breath until he heard a crackle and muffled voices come through.

“Sorry, Fruitful, but didn’t catch that. Repeat.”

More crackling sounds filled the space then a blast. Zane jerked at the surprise but kept focused on their descent toward Fruitful.

A different voice, a woman, could be heard over the speakers. “Caelum I, we’ve been compromised. Our shields are barely holding. You have permission to land at Minister Sola’s residence, mark: forty-five dash thirteen dash one-hundred forty-nine.”

Zane nodded when Sean glanced his way. It was a rare thing to be given access to any minister’s home. Something catastrophic must have happened. He tapped the coordinates into the autopilot system and released control.

“Understood. Coordinates set for Minister Sola’s. Open breeze way.”

“Breeze way open. You have thirty seconds ‘til the gate will close,” the female voice replied. Before the communication was cut, another loud blast sounded from the background.

“What the hell is going on down there?”

“I don’t know Sean, but this is serious. That water is essential. We’ve got to get enough to reseed Earth Vegrandis, or an entire people will be lost.”

“It doesn’t help your mother lives there.”

“Shut up, Sean. Just keep your eyes open. The last thing we need is to surprise a Denian patrol.”

The ship slipped through the gateway into Fruitful’s atmosphere with only a few seconds to spare.

It wasn’t clouds blocking the view into the Oasis of Mars, though. The dome was filled with smoke, light gray and blinding. They couldn’t see anything and had to trust the autopilot to get them to the palace home of the minster.

The thick blanket obscuring their view didn’t stop Zane from searching out the front window for a sight of the oasis. That water was a lifeline, and he needed it.

Nothing. He couldn’t see a damned thing.

“Cap, how close are we to landing?”

He took a quick look at the dash. “Twelve seconds.”

The landing jets activated as soon as he said it, and the ship slowed, halting several feet off the ground before the docking beam from the platform engaged. It locked on and held Caelum I suspended in air.

Zane jumped out of his seat and ran toward the side hatch leading to the docking platform. He pressed the opening mechanism then skipped back and forth on his feet.

“Come on. Come on,” he said between gritted teeth.

The door slid open and allowed the Fruitful atmosphere to mix with that of the ship causing smoke to fill Zane’s lungs when he took a deep breath. He coughed into his hand while he waved the other, trying to see through the thick cover.

Oh shoot! I ran out of word count. That’s terrible for a short story, but I don’t have time to write anything else. And I kinda like this one anyway.

8/21/15 Here’s a link to the next installment: Oasis of Mars: Minister Sola’s Palace

Today is my son’s eighth birthday, so I gotta run! If you enjoyed this story and want to read more, I’ve got more in my brain. I’ll finish writing it in another post, if there’s interest.

46 responses to “Oasis of Mars”

  1. […] but this one is rather stuck in my head right now. You’re stuck with it, too. Part ONE: Oasis of Mars; Part TWO: Minister Sola’s […]


  2. And you once said you weren’t much of Sci Fi writer! My goodness this is fantastic! Can’t wait to read Part 2!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks, Candice! I’m really excited that you like it. I’m seriously nervous I’m going to write something so implausible someone will puke. Haha I’m enjoying myself so much, though. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Ha! I don’t think that would be possible for you! You are brilliant out of your comfort zone.

        Liked by 1 person

        1. You have absolutely made my day, Candice. Thank you. Merci!

          Liked by 1 person

  3. Loved this. I am so gong to have to read the next part when I’ve caught up with all the Blogbattle stories. 🙂 I love scifi, and this is really well done. It reads like it could be real. And that’s a hallmark of great scifi, I think. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks, Phoenix! 😀 I know Gore difficult it can be to keep up on all the available reading material. I’m so glad you found it to have that realistic edge, too. Thanks for that feedback. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Sci-fi is one of my all time favourite genres, so this was a thrill. I loved it! Gripping stuff. I want more 😉

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks, Mel! I’m really glad to hear that. 🙂 I’ve always enjoyed reading and watching sci fi but didn’t realize I’d enjoy writing it.


  5. […] is part two of a story (Oasis of Mars) I started for our “Oasis” Week 23 #BlogBattle. It ended up coming to an abrupt halt […]


  6. It just…ends…cliffhanger…to be continued… Of course I’m interested to know what happens next! 🙂
    You are on a role with this scifi genre, Rachael. First Grecca, and now this!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’ve always been a sci fi geek, dating back to Star Trek, Dr Who, Star Wars, and the like. I only wish I was way more savvy! 😉

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Me toooo! Grew up watching those. 🙂 I’m not savy enough yet either to fully enter the scifi genre. But maybe in the future I will! I used to write scifi for fun so maybe I’ll make something of it some day. Your Grecca would make a great scifi book, I think! 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

        1. Scifi is one of my favorites as far as movies go. I haven’t read a lot of scifi books, though. 🙂 Thanks E. I really enjoy Grecca. The story line could use and bolstering and editing, to be sure, but I think it’s got potential. 🙂 thanks for saying that!

          Liked by 1 person

          1. I haven’t read much if any scifi books either. I would like to get around to it some day though. 🙂

            Liked by 1 person

            1. I’ve read a few by Orson Scott Card. Can’t think of any others off the top of my head, though.

              Liked by 1 person

            2. I liked the Ender’s Game movie! Haven’t read any of his work yet.

              Liked by 1 person

            3. I enjoy his books. 🙂

              Liked by 1 person

  7. It wouldn’t come up so that I could read all the story. You are going to have to make me (Personally) a copy of your short stories. FOR REAL, PLEASE 😁 Grammy

    Liked by 1 person

  8. interest? interested? …it ends ever so terribly, if it was a book this is the part you turn the next page and ….. it’s not there, printing error, author’s private
    joke….. so yes lol

    Word counts aaargh!


    Liked by 1 person

    1. haha Exactly what I hate about some books and TV shows. lol To Be Continued . . . Aaaargh! is right. 🙂 Thanks, B!


  9. I actually like this. I know what you mean about that fact that it could be continued (and I would love to read more) but it leaves the reader at a great spot for a short story.

    Happy Birthday to your little one. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks, Sarah! Glad you like it. There’s definitely a lot left to the imagination with the way it ended. 🙂 And thanks! He’s had a great day. ❤


  10. Great Story! Happy Birthday to your baby!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks, Jahaira! Miss having you battle. How are you feeling?!


      1. How are you? I miss the battles, but my brain is not working properly…I could sleep all year! 😴I’m okay in the AC, I was able to take the boys to the zoo for some fun today because it was cloudy and cool, so I’m feeling really good about that.

        Liked by 2 people

        1. I was like that with my second pregnancy. I was working full time for the first 4 months. I’d be on the verge of falling asleep at my desk all day, go home, fall asleep on the couch, eat dinner, go to bed and sleep all night. haha AC is such a nice thing! 🙂 What was their fav part at the zoo?!


          1. LOVE AC! There is a new baby macaque, one month old, they absolutely loved…they also loved the alligator because they are “dinosaurs” and the gorillas, but I had to move fast on that one, the smell was yuck.

            Liked by 1 person

            1. LOL gorillas are disgusting. When we took the kids to the zoo, one was eating it’s poo. My youngest, that’s all she remembers and tells everyone. haha


            2. That is hilarious and gross!!! One of the monkeys was picking his butt last year… Lol imagine how that went? Lol

              Liked by 1 person

            3. LOL I can totally picture it and my stomach doesn’t thank my imagination

              Liked by 1 person

  11. Nice work! Like it! Zane sounds interesting especially with his rippling muscles…

    Liked by 1 person

    1. The older I get the more I appreciate rippling muscles. lol

      Liked by 3 people

      1. Hmmmmmmm me too IBFF!! ❤️

        Liked by 1 person

  12. There is interest believe me!

    Liked by 1 person

Please leave a comment, question, or idea! I’d love to chat!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Create a website or blog at WordPress.com

%d bloggers like this: